On Monday night I threw my Shane a small surprise Rumdayillovo party. It’s his birthday today which means it’s pretty much impossible for us to go out because of Howl, so with Doug’s help I made prego rolls and potato wedges, hung up balloons with steamers, set-up a poker game and had our Rumday Illovo family over to surprise him. He was ALMOST surprised. Boo. He arrived home literally 10 minutes before everyone else arrived to shout the big ‘S’ word, but he appreciated it anyway.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY MY SHANE, you are my best friend and I love you so so so much.
I also, for the first time attempted to make Oreo cupcakes. They were actually pretty easy to make and they turned out really good, well that’s what everyone told me. I always feel weird saying things tasted good, like I’m blowing my own horn, but they were really nice. The Oreo after being baked in the cake batter turned out really soft and yummy, so when you bit into the cupcake everything was super soft and sweet. I made a simple cocoa buttercream icing for the tops, which complimented them nicely, it also made them look cool, white on the outside and brown on top, sort of like an Oreo.
Anyway here is the recipe for the cupcakes, the buttercream icing I just made up as I went along, but next time I’m totally making this recipe because it sounds amazing and who wouldn’t want the most amazing icing on their cake? Not me.
150g castor sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
200g cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Cream the butter and sugar together Add the vanilla essence and mix well Add the eggs one at a time, scraping the sides of the bowl well after each addition Add the flour, baking powder and milk to the mixture and beat well Pour a small amount of the mixture into the cupcake holders then place a Oreo cookie on top of the mixture before covering it with more batter. Fill the cupcake tin holes just under 3/4 of the way. Bake at 160° for 20 minutes or until the tops of the cupcakes are slightly golden brown. Once they are cooled you can ice them with whatever icing takes your fancy. Like I said I made some cocoa buttercream icing, but next time I’m using this recipe (below) but I’ll add some cocoa.
Fluffy Buttercream Frosting
1 1/2 cups butter, at room temperature (3 sticks)*
4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3 Tbsp heavy cream
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract (use clear if desired)
In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, using the paddle or whisk attachment whip butter on medium high speed (if using whisk attachment whip on high speed) until nearly white and very fluffy, about 7 – 8 minutes, frequently scrapping down the sides of the bowl. Add in powdered sugar, heavy cream and vanilla extract and mix on low speed until blended, then increase speed to medium and beat until very light and fluffy, about 5 – 6 minutes, frequently scraping down the sides of the bowl. Immediately spread over cooled cake or cupcakes.
Typography cake. Now. I want it now.15. May 2013
Good Lord, look at this amazing cake! My friend Clint always finds the coolest things like this and then mails me the link (he found Eyescream and Friends). He is the best at finding stuff that makes me want to backflip off a roof. I’m so so so going to try make this cake and when I do I will blog about the results, but for now check out these cool photos and read about how to make it. Here is a link back to the genius who actually made this in the first place – Victoria I’m sending you a virtual high-5, because your face and this cake flipping rule.
- To make the cake you will need; 1 box cake mix, any flavor (we used white), edible dough (any color), mini alphabet cookie cutters (these will vary in size, make sure they are small enough that when your word is spelled out, it will fit in your pan), a 9×5 loaf pan (or any cake pan in which your message can fit; a bundt pan is a fun one to use), rolling pin, and confectioners sugar.
Take your edible dough and knead it into a workable, pliable consistency. Then sprinkle a little confectioners sugar on a clean surface and roll out the dough to your desired thickness. Cut out the shapes of the letters you want to use in your message. For the cake in this tutorial, I used a whole package of edible dough and cut out the letters Y and A to spell YAY.
Make cake batter according to instructions on box. Grease your pan and pour enough batter in the pan to cover the bottom. Take your cut-out letters and place them in the batter, spelling out your word or message. Repeat this until you have crossed the length of the pan. Make sure the letters are lined up and straight.
Place the rest of the cake batter into a measuring cup (or piping bag if you want to really be careful) and pour batter slowly over the top of the letters, until they are covered and you have used up all the batter.
Bake cake in a 350F oven for about 40 minutes; check for doneness with a toothpick. Allow to cool before using a sharp knife to slice into the cake and reveal the surprise message.
Macaroon time.10. April 2013
There is a lovely little local blog called Whisking It that is run by a lady named Lexi. She bakes and cooks all sorts of things and what I like about her site is she rates the recipes out of 10 so you know what you are getting yourself into. Her blog is just starting out but I think it’s very very sweet. Lexi if you need a guinea pig mouth to feed all your stuff into, i’m your pig.
I have never made macaroons before, but I checked them on Lexis blog and I think I’m going to give them a try. I will let you know how they come out, hopefully they will look something like hers below.
3 egg whites
6 tablespoons superfine (castor) sugar
1 cup finely ground almonds
1 1/2 teaspoons finely ground almonds
1 1/3 cups confectioners’ sugar
Preheat oven to 320 degrees F (160 degrees C). Line baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicon mat.
Whisk egg whites in a clean metal mixing bowl until thick, about 5 minutes; whisk the superfine sugar into the egg whites until thick, glossy, and the mixture holds stiff peaks, 5 to 8 more minutes. Place a sieve over the bowl containing egg whites and sieve both amounts of almond meal and confectioners’ sugar into the egg white mixture. Gently fold the almond meal and confectioners’ sugar into the egg whites, retaining as much air as possible.
Separate the meringue into separate bowls to flavor and color, if desired. Spoon the meringue into a piping bag fitted with a 3/8-inch tip. Pipe 1-inch disks of meringue onto the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches between cookies.
Let the cookies stand at room temperature for about 15 minutes to form a thin skin. Pick up the baking sheets and let drop from several inches above the work surface to adhere cookies to the baking sheets.
Bake in the preheated oven until tops are dry, about 15 minutes; let cool completely on the baking sheets before peeling off the parchment paper.
Beat 150 gr cream cheese with 50 gr butter and vanilla essence and 1.5 cup of icing sugar
Vanilla (Blue) macaroon: Added vanilla essence to the cream cheese mix and iced the blue macaroons.
Strawberry (pink) macaroon: Added pink food colouring to the vanilla/cream cheese mix then iced the pink macaroons. I also added a bit of strawberry jam to the macaroon after the cream cheese icing for more flavour.
White (chocolate) macaroon: Added a cup of cocoa to the remaning pink cream cheese mix and iced the white macaroons.
Here are some other recipes of hers I want to try:
Kalashnikovv Gallery08. April 2013
Went to the Kalashnikovv Gallery (70 Juta in Braamfontien) again the other day to check out their new exhibition called ”THE PAINTERS SHOW’ - group show featuring some of the most talented painters of various styles and schools .
There are a few pieces in there that I would definitely consider cat burglering if I was good at that type of thing. The first piece below is by an artist called Vusi Beauchamp, I don’t know much about him, but I do know that I like this painting. It was unfortunately sold, apparently a lawyer bought it on the opening night. Lucky for him I wasn’t there because I probably would of been lanked bummed and tempted to punch him in both knees when he wan’t looking.
Anyway the show is only on for a little while longer and you should go check out if you can because there are some really great pieces. I took photos of all the ones I liked.